Posts Tagged ‘Surfing’

BeachCare’s Fistral Beach Clean

Today will see the 42nd Fistral Beach Clean kicking off at South Fistral beach at 10:15.  This monthly beach clean is run under Keep Britain Tidy’s BeachCare programme.  I am proud to have been there at the start and to have missed just five of the cleans.  It is my way of giving a little something back and protecting what I love.

BeachCare Fistral Beach Clean

In April 2012 I wrote a blog post titled “Protecting what we love“, the following is from that post;

“If we value our waves and beaches then we all have a part to play in preventing and removing the marine litter and rubbish from our beaches.  These are responsibilities of all who use our beaches and oceans; whether as a surfer or as someone who simply enjoys feeling sand between their toes.

As surfers we can lead the way and maybe others will take note of our actions and follow our example.  So why not at the end of your surf session when you are walking up the beach, stop and collect a handful of rubbish and ditch it into the nearest bin?  Just think what a powerful message and example that would be.”

BeachCare Fistral Beach Clean


For your viewing and listening pleasure… 22 March 2014

Broken Bells – After The Disco. From the album After The Disco, released November 2013.


Pedro Barros, Manly Vale, 12 / 02 / 2014. By Andrew Buckley, released on Vimeo 14 February 2014.


Villagers – Occupy Your Mind. Released February 2014.


Cold & Soba. By Andrew Buckley, released on Vimeo 30 January 2014.


Jaws Winter 2014. By Eric Sterman, released on Vimeo 30 January 2014.


Sharon Van Etten – Taking Chances. From the album Are We There, released May 2014.

Surf Etiquette

Reflecting on another surf where so many of those in the water seemed to lack the basics of surfing etiquette, I think it would be a good to have signs posted at all surfing beaches to remind surfers of the basics.

Looking around the internet for examples of Surf Etiquette information displays I was impressed with a page titled “Surfers Code of Conduct” on the Stoked School of Surf website where the basics are clearly explained.

Thank you to the Stoked School of Surf for giving me permission to re-post that article.

Surfer’s Code of Conduct
So you’ve done the surf lessons, bought the surfboard, know where to surf and now it’s time to get out there. Before setting foot into the ocean outside of the controlled surf lesson environment, there are a few golden rules that we encourage you to abide by to ensure a safe and enjoyable surf experience:


#1 Drive with care
Before you hit the road, make sure that your boards are tied down securely. There’s no need to speed, even if the waves are cranking. Be careful in parking lots at the beaches. Ensure there are no boards (or small children) behind your car before reversing out of your bay. If traveling through smaller coastal towns or the more rural areas of Southern Africa, drive with care.

#2 Study the surf and currents
We recommend watching the ocean for 5-10 minutes (or at least for a set or two) before paddling out, studying the currents and taking note of where the main peak is. Look out for any possible dangers like rock or reef. If it is the first time you are surfing a break, we recommend chatting to a local to ensure there’s no danger you may have missed. Most locals are happy to assist if you ask.

#3 Surf waves suited to your ability
Do not paddle out somewhere that is beyond your capability. Not only can you put yourself in danger, but you run the risk of putting fellow surfers in a dangerous position too.

Surf within your ability

#4 Paddle around the wave, not through it
Once you feel comfortable to paddle out knowing where the safest path to the backline is, be sure to paddle around the defined peak (the channel) and not through it (where people are surfing it). This makes for an easier paddle out and also won’t ruin anyone’s wave.

#5 Look both ways before taking off on a wave
Once you have waited your turn to catch a wave, make sure you look both left and right before paddling for it. The person first to their feet closest to the breaking part of the wave, has right of way. Taking off on a wave where someone is already in this position is considered ‘dropping in’ -a cardinal sin in surfing. If you do drop in, make sure you kick out immediately and ensure you apologise to the person whose wave you possibly messed up.

No Drop In

#6 Always stay in control of your board
Always stay in control of your board. Do not ‘bail’ (let go of) your board. It serves as a good flotation device so hold onto it tightly especially in bigger surf. If you are on a minimal or longboard which is difficult to duck dive, ‘turtle roll’ to get under the foam (and hold onto the board with all your effort). If you are ever panicked in a situation and decide to toss your board aside (which we do not recommend) and swim under a wave, never do so until you have looked behind you to make sure no one could get hurt.

Hold on to your board

#7 Paddle back out safely
When you are paddling back out after a wave, do not paddle in front of someone riding a wave (unless you are way further down the line from them). If you find yourself in a position where you think the person may ride over you, we recommend speed paddling in the direction that the surfer is coming from and not where he is going to i.e. toward the breaking part of the wave, not the open face of the wave. This is not only a safer call, but will also ensure you don’t get in the surfers way and mess up his wave.

Paddle Wide

#8 Do not be a ‘Wavehog’
If you are a longboarder or SUPer, respect the guys on shorter boards on the inside. It’s so much easier to catch waves on these boards making it tempting to catch them all. Respect the rotation system especially at point breaks. Be gracious and generous in letting other surfer’s get their fair share of waves.

#9 Help other surfers and guide those surfers with less experience
We all started somewhere. Don’t forget that.

#10 Respect the ocean and the beach
Leave only footprints. If on your way out of the water back to the car you stumble across some trash, pick it up. Every bit helps.

#11 Respect the locals
Show respect and you will get your fair share of waves.

The ocean is for everyone to enjoy in a safe and respectful manner. If we can follow this simple code of conduct, it will make for an enjoyable surfing experience.

Surf Etiquette

The illustrations used in this piece are by Jenna Barbe. These are photographs of the illustrations which have been printed and laminated onto boards at Muizenberg Beach front.

The Stoked School of Surf is based in Cape Town, South Africa.

For your viewing and listening pleasure… 22 February Twenty Fourteen

Jagwar Ma – Uncertainty. From the album Howlin, released June 2013.


Looking Up by Ed Triglone. Released on Vimeo 6 January 2014.
“Footage from 2013 Bowlarama warmup”  A simply wonderful skateboarding video; brilliant skating and a cool soundtrack.


Real Estate – Talking Backwards. From the album Real Estate, released March 2014.


The National – I Need My Girl. From the album Trouble Will Find Me, released May 2013.


The Golden City by Mike Pagan. Released on Vimeo 12 January 2014.
“A road trip with Matt Pagan and Dayton Silva on a search for waves in “the Golden City”. Though we just missed the big swell that hit San Francisco, we definitely tried to make the best of it. Like cliché tourists, we visited the Golden Gate Bridge, stayed at the first Motel ever built in San Francisco and spent most of our time enjoying the breathtaking views the city has to offer. Even though we didn’t score many waves, it ended up being an awesome road trip with the boys.”


Bird’s Surf Shed by SnowGlobe Studios. Released on Vimeo 12 December 2013.
“Meet Eric “Bird” Huffman, one of San Diego’s most rooted surfers, who through his collection of boards, created what is now San Diego’s most authentic surf shop, “Bird’s Surf Shed.” Revealing what surfing means to him, Bird talks about his surfing style and why he will always have the need to surf. Today, Bird pays homage to the San Diego surf scene by operating Bird’s Surf Shed, a place where it’s all about creating a real surf shop environment and receiving nothing but good vibes. See why it has become a San Diego destination, and not just another surf shop.”

“I will never lose the stoke for surfing…”